Adam Johnson should not play professional football again, says MP Clive Efford

Adam Johnson
Johnson played for Middlesbrough and Manchester City before joining Sunderland in 2012

Adam Johnson should not be allowed to play professional football again, says shadow sports minister Clive Efford.

Johnson has been told to expect a jail sentence after being found guilty of sexual activity with a 15-year-old.

Sunderland sacked the 28-year-old when he admitted grooming the girl and one charge of sexual activity.

"There are certain professions you should not be allowed to pursue if you are on the sex offenders' register," Efford told Sportsweek.

"He can't return to professional football."

Johnson has been released on bail until sentencing, which is expected to take place in the next two to three weeks.

At the trial, the judge said his preliminary view was the case falls into the category of a five-year prison sentence with a range of four to 10 years.

In theory, that could mean Johnson, who has 12 England caps, would be able to resume his career when he is released.

"This case demonstrates that football cannot behave as if there was not an issue when it comes to children and sexual offenders," added Efford on BBC Radio 5 live.

"Being a professional footballer puts you in a position where you are looked up to by young, impressionable people."

Following Johnson's conviction, the Professional Footballers' Association said there was "still much work to do" to educate players.